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K-State Agronomy eUpdates

Department of Agronomy

Kansas State University

1712 Claflin Rd.

2004 Throckmorton PSC

Manhatan, KS 66506

785-532-6101

agronomy@ksu.edu

Extension Agronomy

Comparative Vegetation Condition Report: December 30 - January 12

K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory (EASAL) produces weekly Vegetation Condition Report maps. These maps can be a valuable tool for making crop selection and marketing decisions.

Two short videos of Dr. Kevin Price explaining the development of these maps can be viewed on YouTube at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRP3Y5NIggw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUdOK94efxc

The objective of these reports is to provide users with a means of assessing the relative condition of crops and grassland. The maps can be used to assess current plant growth rates, as well as comparisons to the previous year and relative to the 26-year average. The report is used by individual farmers and ranchers, the commodities market, and political leaders for assessing factors such as production potential and drought impact across their state.

NOTE TO READERS: The maps below represent a subset of the maps available from the EASAL group. If you’d like digital copies of the entire map series please contact Nan An at nanan@ksu.edu and we can place you on our email list to receive the entire dataset each week as they are produced. The maps are normally first available on Wednesday of each week, unless there is a delay in the posting of the data by EROS Data Center where we obtain the raw data used to make the maps. These maps are provided for free as a service of the Department of Agronomy and K-State Research and Extension.

The maps in this issue of the newsletter show the current state of photosynthetic activity in Kansas, the Corn Belt, and the continental U.S., with comments from Mary Knapp, service climatologist:

 

 

KAN_02_2015_CNDVI

Figure 1. The Vegetation Condition Report for Kansas for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that all but southeast Kansas had snow during the period. For much of the state, the amounts were limited. On the 8th of January, the greatest depths were along the eastern edges of the western divisions into central and south central Kansas. By the end of the period only trace amounts were present statewide.

 

KAN_02_2015_PYNDVI

Figure 2. Compared to the previous year at this time for Kansas, the current Vegetation Condition Report for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that lower NDVI values were most common in northwest and parts of southwest and south central Kansas. Higher values are seen in northeast Kansas. Last year the deeper and more persistent snow cover was in northeast Kansas.

KAN_02_2015_LTNDVI

Figure 3. Compared to the 26-year average at this time for Kansas, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the greatest departure is in the areas from Ford County east and north through Clay County. These are also the areas with the greatest snowfall during the period.

 

 

 

CRN_02_2015_CNDVI

Figure 4. The Vegetation Condition Report for the Corn Belt for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that only the extreme southeastern portion of the region missed out on snowfall. However, the snow distribution was limited. The Central Illinois weather office reported 3 inches of snow on the ground at the end of the period. Bridgeport, in the Nebraska Panhandle, had 7 inches.

 

CRN_02_2015_PYNDVI

Figure 5. The comparison to last year in the Corn Belt for the period December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the western portion of region has higher NDVI values than the eastern areas. Snow cover was higher this year in the western parts of the region. Last year, the Arboretum at Madison, Wisconsin had twice the snow cover reported this year.

CRN_02_2015_LTNDVI

Figure 6. Compared to the 26-year average at this time for the Corn Belt, this year’s Vegetation Condition Report for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that higher-than -verage NDVI values are most common in the eastern portion of the region. Persistent snow cover and colder-than-average temperatures have limited NDVI readings in the western sections. This is most notable example of this is in northwestern Nebraska and southern South Dakota.

 

 CNT_02_2015_CNDVI

Figure 7. The Vegetation Condition Report for the U.S. for December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that snow made a brief incursion as far south as Texas and Louisiana. These areas had snow for only a short period, although freezing temperatures extended to the Gulf Coast. This may cause problems in future weeks.

CNT_02_2015_PYNDVI

Figure 8. The U.S. comparison to last year at this time for the period December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that there is a split, with higher NDVI values to the east and lower values to the west. Snow cover is a major factor in these differences.

CNT_02_2015_LTNDVI

Figure 9. The U.S. comparison to the 26-year average for the period December 30 – January 12 from K-State’s Ecology and Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory shows that the greatest departure is along the Pacific Coast. Wet conditions in December have resulted in increased photosynthetic activity in the region.

 

Mary Knapp, Weather Data Library
mknapp@ksu.edu          

Kevin Price, Professor Emeritus, Agronomy and Geography, Remote Sensing, GIS
kpprice@ksu.edu

Nan An, Graduate Research Assistant, Ecology & Agriculture Spatial Analysis Laboratory (EASAL)
nanan@ksu.edu